How we work: The rattlesnake wrangler

by Bo Slyapich, as told to L.R. Ames I guess snake-catching comes naturally to me. I started catching snakes in Malibu Canyon at age five where I lived with my parents. The really big kids— the seven to eight-year-olds—showed me how to do it. By age nine, I had hit my prime—I had 90 snakes and lizards in boxes along the side of my house.  There’s nothing more tenacious than a 9-year-old with snakes and lizards. Did I keep the rattlers as pets? No…my friends and I finished them off…

Seven truths on human trafficking

Living in Conejo Valley, most residents may feel removed from the crisis of child sex trafficking, and thus do not feel the need to educate themselves on one of the largest illegal industries in the world. However, Forever Found, a nonprofit organization dedicated to ending child trafficking, began ten years ago and has been a significant presence in Conejo Valley and Ventura County. Ending this crisis begins with awareness, so here are seven truths that everyone should learn. 1. Trafficking can and does happen everywhere. Sex trafficking was at first…

D’Amore’s Pizza: friendly, local, family business

The Maloney family of Thousand Oaks takes their Italian maiden last name of D’Amore, meaning love, to another level, creating food for many families and meshing it with their love for a community in crisis.  The legacy began when founder Joe D’Amore left his hometown of Boston, Massachusetts, to pursue dreams in Los Angeles. Once there, he pursued a new goal—bringing good pizza to the West Coast. He knew he needed a field expert, so he brought “Momma Nonna” to Los Angeles with her authentic recipes and ingredients. She helped…